Cybersecurity breaches can happen to any business at any moment and the frequency of these intrusions are increasing rapidly. The massive data breach that hit Equifax earlier this year is just one example that having a robust cybersecurity plan in place is vital. There are numerous ways to defend against these attacks, but setting up a security operation center (SOC) is one of the best ways to prevent security issues from infecting your company. An effective SOC installation starts with employing a skilled team of security professionals that will continually monitor your information technology and server infrastructure to detect and prevent cyber breaches. As information and data security evolves from being just an IT problem to an overall organizational concern, business leaders may begin to consider if they need to commit the time and resources to take this next step in cybersecurity.
Does Your Business Need a Security Operation Center?With the threat of cybercrime so prevalent, many company decision makers wonder if they should build their own SOC. There are several questions to consider when deciding whether it’s worth your time, effort and budget resources.
- Do you have the tools and the expertise to build an in-house SOC? This is the first question you need to answer. Building an SOC is no small undertaking and if you don’t have the necessary tools to implement it properly, you may need to reconsider and look at outsourcing this task. Your security operations center will require several levels of technology and equipment including network monitoring, alert system and response protocol. Either you have these tools in place, or you must pay for external assistance if you are going to build an effective in-house SOC.
- Do you have the right staff in place for a SOC? If you have the necessary tools and expertise in place, you next requirement to consider is whether or not you have the right people available to move forward. It doesn’t matter how advanced your technology is, without good people to manage it, your security operation center will not be successful. It takes a talented and prepared team to operate a SOC. You will also need the proper leadership to direct the SOC, but employing top notch support staff with a diverse set of skills will be just as important. This includes engineers, operations people, and analysts. Each of these roles is important in order for your SOC to function properly. Therefore, you must determine if your current staff can cover these positions. If not, can you afford to hire the additional required staff?
- Does your business handle data that needs to be monitored 24/7? Every company handles sensitive information, no matter the industry. Whether you have to protect your own company’s data or you need to keep your customers’ data secure, or both, you must be sure that the proper level of cybersecurity is in place. That being said, if you build an in-house security operations center, will you have the required resources in place to effectively monitor sensitive data 24 hours a day, seven days week, 365 days a year? This is a labor intensive task and cannot be taken lightly. Alert fatigue is real and can lead to errors or lapses in security. It can also lead to losing good people who get burned out from the constant grind.
- Do you have money in the budget to build a SOC? As with any capital business project, budget plays a key role in deciding whether or not move forward and it’s no different when deciding to build a security operations center. As previously discussed, you need to weigh several factors when making this decision. There will be expenses for equipment, human expertise and the tools needed to create the SOC. You also need to factor in the cost of staff to manage and run the SOC, as well as the level of security required. Lastly, you must determine the cost of responding to threats and implementing additional security enhancements to prevent further attacks. If you determine your SOC budget is inadequate, you may have to adjust your plans or possibly consider outsourcing your SOC implementation.